Chula Vista takes another step toward legalizing pot dispensaries

CHULA VISTA, Calif. -- The City of Chula Vista voted again Tuesday night to approve the sale, distribution, cultivation and manufacturing of marijuana within city limits.

The required second reading took place as the city begins to create the framework to legalize pot sales. The vote was almost unanimous, with only Councilmember John McCann voting against it.

The city has said it wants to issue 12 licenses for storefronts and distribution operations. It also plans to allow cultivation and manufacturing facilities.

Some residents worry this will backfire on the city.

"I think the ordinance that they plan on using to keep operations in check is not going to work. You're going to be increasing access, you'll increase use and increase problems," said Kathleen Lippitt.

The city has yet to finalize the application process for licenses. It also needs to place a measure on the November ballot for an excise tax on marijuana sales. Without approval from voters, the city has said it will not allow any marijuana operations.

If it all falls into place, pot dispensaries should open early in 2019. Until then, all operations now operating are considered illegal.